These days boys from South Korea are really popular, but back in 2008 they were just boys at my university to me; and, the horror stories on the internet that almost scared me away from them haven’t changed– that much. But, I wasn’t scared away. In the end, who could have resisted the charms of Jae Joong, DBSK, and all the Korean boys that followed…
My “First” Korean Boy
Back then I had Statistics with a Korean boy– actually the second or third Korean boy I had ever met in my entire life, and no, he didn’t look like a Korean idol. But, we happened to go to the same party. I went and said hi to him first, and we ended up drinking and dancing together. We became Facebook friends and talked often, but later– somehow, I was deleted from his Facebook. I thought he had deleted me, but he apologized and explained what happened as soon as he found out that his friends had done it as a joke. Suddenly, I was aware of our differences, and I had to ask myself these three questions:
“Are Koreans racist?”
“Do Korean boys like black girls?”
“Can I meet and date a nice Korean boy?”
Since then, I have found the answers to the questions I had; and, I want to share my answers with you, because they just might give you the courage you need to follow your heart.
Koreans are Probably Not as Racist as You Think They Are
Koreans are still very xenophobic, which is characterized by an irrational fear of that which is perceived as foreign or strange. Meaning, they’re just not used to seeing and might not like foreigners, especially black foreigners. For example, Koreans often stare at black foreigners. When I went to Korea, I literally got goosebumps because I realized everyone around was watching me as I walked down a street in Apgujeong with my friend. But, don’t take the Korean stare the wrong way. Sometimes, they are staring out of genuine curiosity. If you smile, they might even smile back. Even if they do say or do something rude or disrespectful to you, be polite and respectful to them. Not everyone will be willing to accept you for who you are, but you should be willing to try to change their minds by making a good first and last impression.
Tip: If you speak a little or a lot of Korean and show that you are familiar with their culture, Koreans tend be very warm and welcoming.
Korean Boys Like (Some) Black Girls
Koreans tend to have one standard of beauty for both men and women. Their ideal women tend to be pale and thin, with big eyes, a small nose, and an oval, or “V” shaped jaw line. They also idealize long, straight hair, although the ocean wave is also a hot trend in Korea. In addition, Koreans find pale skin tones cute and innocent and tanned skin tones sexy. Beyonce is the perfect example of a black woman who is popular with Korean men, because she is tanned and has a “glamorous,” curvy body. Many idols like Hyosung, Hyomin, and Ailee are known as “The Korean Beyonce.”
However, Naomi Campbell is also very popular in Korea, and they call her Victoria Secret’s “Shining Black Pearl.”
Korean boys and men also appreciate stylish girls and women, as well as girls and women of all shades, shapes, and sizes; although, there does seem to be a general preference for paler, smaller, skinnier girls and women.
American girls and women can sometimes fall behind the rest of the world when it comes to fashion, so I suggest looking your absolute best at least– no matter what size you are, which will definitely turn heads and land smiles. You might even get a few compliments, which is always a great way to start a conversation. This might seem shallow, but Koreans are very concerned with first impressions and image!
Meeting and Dating a Nice Korean Boy: Don’t Break The Three Golden Rules
First, what are the Three Golden Rules– that you’ve probably never heard of, right?
1. Learn to speak Korean– even a little. 2. Don’t meet Korean boys or men in clubs. 3. Never sleep with a Korean boy or man that you just met, especially if you met him at a club and he tries to take you to a love motel! Most girls ignore the importance of the first rule and break the second and third rule. But, Korean boys or men might try to sleep with you very quickly because they think foreign girls and women, especially American girls and women, are open about having sex. However, they will probably lose interest in you if you sleep with them too soon, especially if you don’t actually speak the same language and don’t or either can’t find out whether or not you actually have anything in common.
So, you should either talk about what you want from each other upfront or just wait until you get to know each other before having sex. I think this goes for any relationship with anyone, though!
Tip: When you meet Korean boys or men, they probably won’t know anything about you except for what they have seen on TV. So, work hard to help them get to know you and be patient with their questions about your skin or hair.
These answers aren’t good or bad, and you might have different ones based on your own experiences.
However, keep an open mind and an open heart, and someone special– Korean or not, will feel your sincerity and genuinely welcome you, help you, and grow to understand and even love you.
Finally, be sure to check out Korean Boys (and Me) and Korean Boys and Black Girls, Part 2: Its Not That Complicated (Or Is It?). In the first post, I’ll talk more about my relationships with Korean boys, including my best friend from college and my ex-boyfriend. In the second post, I’ll talk more about my relationship with my ex-boyfriend and offer some advice on how to overcome the language, cultural, and even physical barriers that come with being in an interracial relationship.